Lefty Notes

Gotcha. Bet you thought this was going to be a political post.

Nope. It's about Cub left-handed pitchers. What are you thinking??

Anyway, on the Cubs website today, unofficial Cubs historian Ed Hartig (who helped vet my top 100 list) weighs in with some notes on what Cub lefthanded starters have done at Wrigley Field, given that we will have two (Rich Hill, Ted Lilly) in the rotation in 2007.

It's not a pretty picture:

Over the last 10 years, from 1997-2006, Cubs lefty starters are 28-48 at Wrigley with a 5.13 ERA in 117 games. They've thrown three complete games (Andrew Lorraine in 1999 and Hill had two in 2006, although one was five innings) and have given up 99 home runs over 647 1/3 innings.

There's a small error in that paragraph, incidentally. The stats quoted are supposed to be at Wrigley Field only; the five-inning CG by Hill last year was at Cincinnati. (He lost that game, too.)

There simply haven't been enough lefthanded starters on Cub rosters in recent years to do any good. The last lefty to start and finish a full year in the rotation was Greg Hibbard -- in 1993. Hibbard had a decent year -- 15-11 with a 3.96 ERA -- but was allowed to leave as a free agent, and threw half a year for the Mariners before arm trouble ended his career.

It's a pretty good bet that Hill and Lilly will turn in better numbers than those posted from 1997-2006. For any possibility of success by the 2007 Cubs, they'll need to.

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